The event boasts the largest prize-money pool in SA hockey history and Ayden Shrives of sponsors Greenfields said their investment makes sense. “The Greenfields Elite Club Challenge gives the company that produces world-class astro turf and synthetic flooring the perfect opportunity to interact directly with its market,” said Shrives, himself a former top player and current world-rated umpire.
The event, started in 2013 by Riverside Sports and its Riverside Hockey Club, is targeted as an event for the whole family. “Pure hockey enjoyment at its best is our mission,” added RHC chairperson Wayne Phillips. And the line-up is impressive.
Wanderers Jockeys of Johannesburg have six national players in their team including Beijing 2008 Olympian Tommy Hammond, London 2012 Olympian and SA number one goalkeeper Rassie Pieterse as well as the 84-Test striker Miguel da Graca. Host club Riverside HC boast four national players in the 100-Test London Olympian Taine Paton as well as fellow Olympian, Commonwealth Games and World Cup midfield maestro Tim Drummond.
Friday – 18h00 (turf 1) – WPCC Badgers v Old Edwardians; 18h00 (turf 2) – Malik Old Albanians v Kearsney HC; 20h00 (turf 1) – Riverside HC v Wanderers Jockeys.
Saturday – 09h30 (turf 1) – Riverside HC v Malik Old Albanians; 09h30 (turf 2) – Kearsney HC v Old Edwardians; 11h30 (turf 1) – Wanderers Jockeys v WPCC Badgers; 16h30 (turf 1) – Malik Old Albanians v Old Edwardians; 18h00 (turf 1) – Kearsney HC v Wanderers Jocke ys; 20h00 (turf 1) – Riverside HC v WPCC Badgers.
Sunday – 09h00 (turf 2) – 5th / 6th place playoff; 09h30 (turf 1) – 3rd / 4th place playoff; 11h15 (turf 1) – FINAL.